Cubs Edge A's at Papago Park

Frank Batista threw four shutout innings and Carlos Rojas got the last four outs to nail down the victory, as the EXST Cubs edged the EXST A’s 5-4 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action at Papago Park Field #2 in Phoenix this morning.


Batista became the first EXST Cubs pitcher to throw four innings, allowing just one hit and no walks while striking out one. The 21-year old Dominican RHP was the Cubs #1 pitching prospect in the DSL last season, going 4-2 with a 3.55 ERA and 1.20 WHIP, with 7/63 BB/K in 58.1 IP for DSL Cubs #1. So far at EXST, Batista has thrown 9.2 IP, allowing four runs (three ER) on six hits, 2/4 BB/K, with a 2.79 ERA, 0.83 WHIP, and .171 OBA.


EXST Cubs co-closer Danny Keefe (2009 14th round draft pick out of the U. of Tampa) had a rough day on the mound, allowing three runs on four hits (including three ringing doubles) in 1.2 IP, before Carlos Rojas extinguished the fire.


3B Charles Thomas (2009 10th round pick out of Edward Waters College) had two hits, scored a run, stole a base, and made two nifty plays at 3B (one a running catch in LF foul territory and the other a nice scoop & throw). The 21-year old 6’4 225 Thomas is now hitting .405 (.463 OBP), and leads the EXST Cubs in BA, OBP, hits, walks, runs scored, RBI, and stolen bases, and has struck out just three times in 41 PA. (He led the AZL Cubs in hits, doubles, and RBI in 2009). Thomas also has a cannon for an arm, one of the most-powerful throwing arms in the organization, making him a good candidate to get moved to the mound if things don’t work-out at 3B (he was a combination 3B/RHP in college).


The one negative against Thomas right now (besides the fact he is blocked at 3B by Matt Cerda at Peoria and Josh Vitters at Daytona) is that for a big guy, he just doesn’t seem to generate much power (he hit just one HR in 45 games with the AZL Cubs last season, and he had his first EXST XBH—a double--today). Because he is a big dude, Thomas also gets starts at 1B, and while he can play 1B, his arm is wasted there.


Catcher Luis Flores saw his first game action today since Minor League Camp in March, starting the game at DH before moving to catcher in the 6th. He did not reach base, but he did drive-in a run with an F-9 SF. The 23-year old Flores was reinstated from the Suspended List on Monday.


Here is today’s abridged box score (EXST Cubs players only):


LINEUP
1. Pin-Chieh Chen, DH #1: 1-3 (K, BB, 1B, 1-3, RBI, SB, CS)
2. Arismendy Alcantara, SS: 0-4 (F-7, K-DP, 3-1, F-9)
3. Xavier Batista, RF: 0-3 (K, BB, K, K)
4. Charles Thomas, 3B: 2-4 (1B, 4-3, 2B, K, R, SB)
5. Bobby Wagner, 1B: 1-4 (P-2, 3-1, 1B, K, R, RBI)
6. Alvaro Ramirez, CF: 0-1 (4-3, BB, 1-3 SH, R, SB)
7a. Blair Springfield, 2B: 0-2 (K, K)
7b. Wes Darvill, 2B: 0-1 (FC, R)
8. Luis Flores, DH-C: 0-2 (F-9, K, F-9 SF, RBI)
9. Jose Guevara, C-DH: 0-3 (F-9, E-5, K, R)
10. Cody Shields, LF: 0-3 (6-3, 4-3, 5-3)


PITCHERS:
1. Frank Batista – 4.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 4/6 GO/FO, 52 pitches (37 strikes)
2. Alvido Jimenez – 2.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (0 ER), 1 BB, 0 K, 1 GIDP, 5/0 GO/FO, 25 pitches (13 strikes)
3. Danny Keefe – 1.2 IP, 4 H, 3 R (3 ER), 0 BB, 0 K, 1/3 GO/FO, 36 pitches (25 strikes)
4. Carlos Rojas – 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 2/2 GO/FO, 12 pitches (8 strikes)


ERRORS (2):
SS Arismendy Alcantara E-6 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base – did not score)
SS Arismendy Alcantara E-6 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base, runner on 1st base to advance to 2nd, and runner on 3rd base to score unearned run)


OUTFIELD ASSIST:
CF Alvaro Ramirez: batter-runner thrown out 8-6-5 trying to stretch double into triple


ATTENDANCE: 15


WEATHER: Partly cloudy and breezy with temperatures in the 60’s

Comments

Thanks AZ PHIL as always.

I was wondering - since you spend so much time evaluating and looking at various team's youngsters - in your opinion, how does the Cubs A and AA prospects stack up compared with the other systems? Could you rank them possibly?

Thanks.

Submitted by The E-Man on Fri, 04/30/2010 - 5:26pm.
Thanks AZ PHIL as always.

I was wondering - since you spend so much time evaluating and looking at various team's youngsters - in your opinion, how does the Cubs A and AA prospects stack up compared with the other systems? Could you rank them possibly?

Thanks.

==================================

E-MAN: I only see the Angels, Giants, A's, Angels, and Brewers in Minor League Camp and Extended Spring Taining, with the Dodgers and White Sox added in AZ Instructional League play, and then I see the cream of everybody's AA crop and a few of the bext A+ guys in the AFL, so based on that, I would say that the Cubs probably have among the best prospects in baseball crammed into the Peoria-Daytona-Tennessee range, but not so much at AAA. The Cubs also have not done much in Latin America lately, taking more of a quantity over quality approach in the DSL, and that has had a bit of a negative impact on the depth at Extended Spring Training.

i'm boycotting AZPhil's posts.

=p

enjoy the break in weather before summer kicks in. this kind of baseball reporting is rare and welcome for the mega-fan. thanks.

It is indeed awesome stuff.

The boycotts are obviously not working. Attendance of 15 -- rather high today.

hahaha. awesome.

:)

It would be tough to make a living as a vendor there.

I dunno. We really don't know how much AZ Phil weighs in at.

forget that...they never know when hendry will show up. that will pay a vendor for a week or 2, alone. everything else is just gravy...unless hendry eats all the gravy. still, that's just more profit.

It's a gamble, but the payoff is xtreme

AZ -- is it possible Thomas is just working on things or has he never really hit for power? A guy that size doesn't sound like a slap hitter to me.

Submitted by Old and Blue on Fri, 04/30/2010 - 6:58pm.
AZ -- is it possible Thomas is just working on things or has he never really hit for power? A guy that size doesn't sound like a slap hitter to me.

============================================

OLD & BLUE: Charles Thomas isn't a slap hitter. He hits the ball hard, sometimes really puts a hammer on the ball, but when he does they mostly turn into ground balls & choppers and opposite-field low line-drives. When he does put the ball into the air, the result is most-always a lazy pop-up, usually to the opposite field. He almost never elevates the ball with authority, and he hasn't learned how to turn on a pitch and pull it. If he can learn to do this, he could be a star. Otherwise, I suspect he will become a RHP.

Hey,

Anyone notice that Wells didn't walk anyone yesterday? He knew the wind was blowing out but pitched like a man and took his lumps. He was rewarded with a victory despite giving up 5 runs.

I like it.

It's one of the reasons when people say "Wins are meaningless" they're showing their ignorance. And the end of the year someone is going to look at that start and say "well, he pitched like crap, but he won because he got a ton of run support." He won because he pitched better than the starter he was facing.

Dan Haren pitched better than Carlos Silva today, who got the win?

promoted to Triple A

He's actually going to pitch tomorrow in AA. Eastern League Managers celebrate. I wonder what he's supposed to learn in AAA. How long does he need to stay down to push back arbitration a year?

IIRC mid to late May.

game on WGN and no one's in parachat or here...

is the TCR webserver located in ARZ or something?

heading to parachat now

It better not be located in Arizona else I'm going to BCB.

according to len z's "not ready to go back to back"

...this experiment is still stupid...

meh.

It's not an experiment:It's desperation. The bullpen blows. Any chance the doughnut man buys us another flea market reliever? We all know the pickings are slim. teh mediocrity.

tie game! 5-5! soriano!

who needs kerry wood when you got carlos marmol...put a little drama into the 9th...fun.

Just an observation:The Dustysizer finally pulled Homer Bailey (5 GS, 0-1, 6.04 ERA) after 121 pitches today.
Bailey had been averaging 5.1 IP/ start this year. Today he went 6.2 allowing 3 runs but Cincy lost to the Cards 6-3.

Wed, 17 Feb 2010 02:35:20 -0500

Sports Illustrated (SI.com) reports Major League Baseball writer Tom Verducci has listed 10 pitchers he believes may suffer from the "Verducci effect," which is a slump from one season to the next following a sudden rise in innings pitched.

At highest risk is San Diego Padres SP Cesar Carrillo, whose 160 2/3 innings marked an increase of 84 innings from the previous year. Other pitchers at risk include Houston Astros SP Bud Norris, San Diego Padres SP Mat Latos, New York Yankees SP Joba Chamberlain, Cincinnati Reds SP Homer Bailey, Florida Marlins SP Josh M. Johnson, Detroit Tigers SPs Rick Porcello and Max Scherzer, Seattle Mariners SP Felix Hernandez and Tampa Bay Rays SP Wade Davis.

Read more: http://www.kffl.com/player/10488/MLB#ixzz0miA...

bailey threw 105 last time out 6 days ago...he should be fine.

the guy threw 200 innings between the majors and AAA last year.

once again dusty is doing nothing out of the ordinary.

eventually a pitcher has to do what he's being paid to do and...pitch.

Bailey has never thrown as many as 120 pitches before as a Red -- maybe never before, period. So, well see if he's going to be fine or not. The post was about the Verducci effect. And so far Homer Bailey (0-1 6.04 ERA) has been having a rough year as predicted. But why Verducci doesn't include minor league innings sure does makes the whole concept weak.

It doesn't make the concept weak, it just means he's doing a bad job monitoring the concept.

bailey's maybe never thrown 120 pitches for the reds...so what?

120 isn't some magic number. a guy will never throw 120 if he's never going to be put out there to do so.

guys used to throw 120-150 pitches in an outing and they went on to have "just fine" careers. besides all that, he was on 6 days rest and has a 200 inning season behind him. he showed up for 2010 ready to go. too bad he's not that good of a pitcher, anyway. all "stuff."

ATL organ player (they're doing a way better job not relying on the sound effect board this year) was playing nirvana's "in bloom" between an ab. ha.

Nobody tell Fukkakedome that it's May.

Someone tell AramRam it's May.

Good idea. I've actually given up already, though. This might be a record for me.

who got the win?
---
Sean Marshall

(concrete thinking at it's best)

Recent comments

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  • Manny Rondon faced 13 batters ... and got 10 to K. Not a bad day's work.

    Eric S 5 hours 9 min ago view
  • With several other Cubs hitters bailing out on curves today I think overall it wasn't being seen well. It for sure looked silly but a good breaking pitch coming at you and then breaking down isn't the easiest thing to see and has made many hitters look silly. Also Soler should have more walks this year but for quite a few called strikes that were actual balls and even the called strike he bailed on was borderline.

    johann 8 hours 7 min ago view
  • it's not like we're talking about a guy who's never had issues with pitch selection and seeing the ball over here. we're talking about a guy who has some rather legendary swing-and-misses at breaking stuff who's been exploited low. going forward it's worth paying attention to seeing if he can be exploited inside, too. he seriously bailed out of the box on a called strike. sure it was a good curve, but he obviously didn't see that well at all.

    crunch 8 hours 19 min ago view
  • It would seem like he is figuring it out now and it's really coming together. Really happy for him. Joe was really protecting him from the 3rd time through the order, but as you allude to, he is earning trust to go deeper.

    Wondering if has potential to become a #3 pitcher? His current stats certainly support it.

    The E-Man 8 hours 28 min ago view
  • That doesn't count b/c CRUNCH didn't see it on his 60" HDTV 5 times in replay.

    I have seen many players "bail out" when the ball looked like it was gonna hit them.

    Especially with the advent of the splitter and pitchers that can really get the ball to dance. Marmol, Sutter, Pedro Martinez, Curt Schilling, Derek Lowe, Smoltz, Arrietta...

    These guys have made the best bail out only for the ball to come over the plate and be called a strike.

    No shame in that. The same way players whiff hard enough to cause them to drill a hole in the ground from spinning.

    The E-Man 8 hours 33 min ago view
  • a 60" TV with slow-motion replay and multiple looks on that replay helps...a lot...

    it's one thing to shy away like he did the 2nd time, it's another to bail out of the box on a called strike. that happened in the 1st one he pulled away from. he misjudged that one by a foot or so...

    crunch 8 hours 52 min ago view
  • Good Hendricks sure is fun to watch. He was hitting all his corners today and the Phillies couldn't do anything with his changeup.

    johann 9 hours 28 min ago view
  • Bryant and I believe Zobrist both did that too.

    johann 9 hours 45 min ago view
  • Soler BB acumen and plate awareness is excellent. Not unusual for even the best players to react as if they were about to hit them, "even though they weren't that close" from your vantage point sitting on your deck, or wherever.

    The E-Man 9 hours 47 min ago view
  • soler vs inside breaking balls is scary.

    he's had 2 inside curve balls today where he reacted as if they were about to hit him even though they weren't that close...one he bailed out of the box on, it was a called strike.

    crunch 10 hours 5 min ago view
  • j.urias optioned back to AAA...guess we wont be seeing him in the LAD series.

    crunch 10 hours 12 min ago view
  • so is him actually getting 2 hits in a game (2 doubles!)...first time he's even been on base 2 times in a game since 9 games ago on his 3/4, 1bb day.

    im ready for him to at least look like a 2-slot hitter since he's gonna be slotted there no matter what he does.

    crunch 11 hours 8 min ago view
  • That Heyward move to avoid Bryant's ball hit at him was a thing of beauty too.

    johann 11 hours 26 min ago view
  • 9 pitches in and this game already rules.

    HR, double...bryant's turn (who came out to a Kris Kross song for some horrible, horrible reason).

    ...2 run inning...zoobrest hitting streak at 14.

    crunch 11 hours 30 min ago view
  • First time I saw Herrera was yesterday. He took like 100 pitches, fouled off a ton off Lester.

    Very nice young player and perfect leadoff guy.

    The E-Man 12 hours 40 min ago view
  • Obviously not Phil. But he mentioned this on Wednesday.

    "Dominican Summer League (DSL) Opening Day is Saturday June 4th, so probably about 8-10 pitchers and position players presently at EXST in Mesa will be sent to the Cubs Dominican Academy (probably sometime this week) and be assigned to either DSL Cubs #1 or DSL Cubs #2."

    In the comments here: http://www.thecubreporter.com/05242016/cub-power-d...

    QuietMan 13 hours 19 min ago view